shutterstock (2)A perfect day of airline travel is nearly impossible to find—but all the checkpoints and the delays you run into are simple costs of running a gravity-defying system (or, they’re one of these bizarre reasons we’ve heard of for flight delays). A hold up in the security line may seem like an inconvenience, but it’s a better alternative than what a more cursory bag searching system would yield.
Two restricting safety precautions you may be familiar with are the “travel alert” and the “travel warning,” which seem near-identical. But there is a difference between the two and it all comes down to duration.
According to the U.S. State Department, a travel alert is the briefer of the two, as it’s issued when “short-term events” occur in a country that you may be traveling to. For example, a travel alert was issued several years ago for parts of West Africa amid the Ebola outbreak, during the summer of 2014—the alert ended on December 4, 2015. The outbreak was considered to be a temporary situation, so it only warranted an alert. Travel alerts are used to make you aware of the situations but aren’t necessarily telling you to cancel your plans altogether.
Travel warnings are issued when a situation is considered to have a more indefinite end date. Ongoing issues, like a civil war or spikes in crime, will often lead to the issuing of a travel warning. In these situations, the State Department wants travelers to “to consider very carefully whether you should go to a country at all.” Following a series of attacks on U.S. Embassy employees in Havana, the State Department issued a travel warning for Cuba in late September.
In addition to the State Department’s ongoing list of travel alerts and warnings, you should also keep in mind the CDC’s travel health notices—and take note of these ways to avoid getting sick on vacation as well.
[Source: Southern Living]